Peel Treatment Q&A with Meredith Harris, Lead Medical Aesthetician at Russak+

Peel Promotion

Why should you peel generally?

Meredith: Peel treatments are versatile and beneficial in many ways; first, they flush out (turn over) our skin cells. Peels remove the dead skin layer and clean out our pores while signaling the skin to stimulate new healthy skin cell growth. Removing the top layer also allows topical products to penetrate better and not just sit on top of dead skin doing nothing. When these high-grade products penetrate, your skin will visibly improve in color, texture and pore size.

The new and healthier skin cells that appear after a peel are more hydrated and don’t show any sun damage; all of which makes the skin appear brighter and even. Peels have an added benefit of helping the skin rejuvenate by stimulating collagen to plump fine lines and wrinkles.

Peels are a great pick me up for almost all skin types! I really enjoy customizing our peels around lifestyle needs and long-term goals. For example, I will add peels to my brides’ regimen strategically to brighten them before their big day. Or I will use a peel on my more acne-prone patients as part of our plan to help reduce onset breakouts.

What is a Reverse Damage+ peel exactly?

Meredith: The RD+ peel is our most popular peel in the fall because it is perfect for treating summer damage. The RD+ peel is comprised of 20% trichloroacetic acid, lactic acid for hydrating the skin and kojic acid for brightening. RD+ is customizable in efficacy depending on how long we leave it on the skin and how many times we layer it (which should always be discerned by a professional). TCA Peels are the go-to for really pulling the pigment off the skin and diminishing acne-scarring while giving the skin an added hydration boost.

Who’s the wrong candidate for a Reverse Damage+ peel?

Meredith: I like evaluating skin in person because sometimes a professional eye can pick up on the nuances of your skin better. Peels are not administered on patients taking oral retinoids (less than 6 months), any patients who are pregnant or breastfeeding, or if any patients have open lesions on the treatment area or have sunburnt skin. RD+ peels are not recommended for patients who desire no downtime, have an event within a few days of treatment. I would not recommend peeling if you have any irritation, or have active eczema, flare-ups of any skin condition.

What can I expect right after I peel?

Meredith: It really depends on the strength of the peel used. Lactic acid peels give an immediate radiance to the skin. With stronger peels like the RD+ peel, you may look “pink” or have red flushing, feel warm to the touch and feel tightness. We use a soothing cream and apply SPF to calm and protect the skin. It’s similar to how you’d treat a baby’s “new” skin to protect it from environmental factors.

Can I peel and go? (Is there downtime)?

Meredith: Yes you can actually! I love peels because they’re totally customizable (in strength level). We use peels this way to address a variety of skin concerns while taking lifestyle demands into consideration. We have instantly radiating peels with zero downtime which are perfect before an event!

Why should I choose a peel over a facial?

Meredith: We’re looking at two factors before deciding: amount and type of damage we are addressing/or skin condition, and duration plus downtime. If we are addressing sun damage, freckling, large pores and texture issues, we use a stronger peel than what’s included in our facial treatment. If I see that the skin is congested, then I prefer doing a facial one week before a peel to deep clean and purge impurities so that the peel is more effective. From a time perspective, facials are one hour in duration with 0 downtime. Stronger peels are thirty minutes in duration with some downtime. Peels can leave skin flushed immediately after, and skin flaking can occur about 3 days after the peel and can last upwards of 1-3 days after that, so it really depends on your personal time restriction and desired outcome!

Will it sting?

Meredith: Mild peels have little to no tingling. The stronger the peel, the “spicier” it feels. This sensation only lasts 1-4 minutes while the peel is activated (and it’s so worth the benefits!)

Why should I get a peel at Russak+ versus DIY?

Meredith: In-office treatments are stronger and more effective at correcting damage than at-home fixes. Plus, you’re being assessed by a professional who knows how to counteract any allergies or adverse reactions that may occur during a peel. At-home should be for maintaining your results only with great skincare, and our step-by-step product regimen created during your visit.

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